UBL Game 2
Tullamore were the visitors to Killballyowen on Saturday for round 2 of the UBL. Tullamore came into the game on the back of a narrow 13-12 home defeat to Old Crescent with Bruff coming off the back of a bonus point victory over Dundalk. Last season’s meeting in the mid-lands was probably the game of the season with Tullamore coming out on top 24-23 thanks to a late try from their tight head prop Ger Molloy.
Bruff made one change for this game with Graham Whelan coming onto the wing for the injured Mark Cosgrove. Brian Cahill took Whelan’s place on the bench and Keith Laffan also came onto the bench to replace Stephen Foster who picked up an injury at training during the week.
Bruff started brightly and looked like scoring 5 minutes into the game but were penalised inside the Tullamore 22 for an infringement at the ruck which allowed the visitors to clear their lines. On 9 minutes Bruff were awarded a kickable penalty after a great kick chase from the Bruff back three but were unlucky to see the Tony Cahill’s effort come back off the left upright. On 15 minutes Tullamore made a telling visit to the Bruff 22 and were awarded a penalty which was converted to make it 0-3 to the Co. Offaly men. Bruff levelled on 27 minutes with a penalty from Tony Cahill to make it 3-3.
It was obvious at this stage that the result was going to be tight as it was last season and who ever scored next was going to have the advantage. Tullamore very nearly took that advantage on 33 minutes. The Tullamore backs moved the ball wide and there winger showed a clean pair of heals and was heading to the corner flag until Bruff fullback Brendan Deady made a last gasp try saving tackle to keep the visitors out. Bruff cleared their lines and on 40 minutes converted a second penalty to make it 6-3 at half time.
Tullamore started well in the second half and their pressure was rewarded on 43 minutes when they got in for a converted try to make it 6-10. Bruff didn’t panic and on 50 minutes scored a try under the Tullamore posts. A solid Bruff scrum set the platform for the backs to move the ball from left to right with Full back Brendan Deady hitting the line at speed to touch down for the 5 pointer which Tony Cahill converted. Cahill kicked two more penalties on 55 & 65 minutes to make it 19-10 to Bruff with just 15 minutes remaining. But Tullamore struck again on 70 minutes with an unconverted try which made for a nail biting finish. With just four points between the teams Bruff pushed hard and won a penalty straight in front of the visitor’s posts. Player coach Mikey Carrol executed a perfectly timed counter ruck which forced Tullamore to concede the penalty. Cahill made no mistake and took Bruff’s advantage to 7 points (22-15) with only a few minutes remaining. Tullamore have proven in the past that they are a team that play to the death and nearly sneaked in with the last play of the game only for some great scramble defence from the Bruff backs.
Team 1 Dave Horan 2 John Hogan 3 Brendan Keogh 4 Mike Cooke 5 Ger O Connell 6 Danny Keogh 7 Mike Carroll 8 Paddy Clery 9 Tony Cahill 10 Dave O Grady 11 Paudie Kilcoyne 12 Sean Darcy 13 Tom O Callaghan 14 Graham Whelan 15 Brenan Deady 16 Cillian Rea 17 Keith Laffan 18 Neilus Keogh 19 Brian Cahill 20 Liam Treacy
The seniors travel to Navan this weekend for round 3 of the League. Navan had a big opening day victory over Sligo followed by defeat last weekend to Old Crescent. KO is 2.30pm in the Balreask Old Grounds
2nds Defeat Shannon in Cracker.
The 2nds gave an impressive performance on Sunday to overcome Shannon on a score-line of 39-34. Bruff had try’s from Brian Cahill, James McCarthy, Liam Treacy & Eamon O Dea. Try of the game came from prop forward Shane Breen who showed some great skills before dotting down for the score. Brian Cahill & Richie McAuliffe shared kicking duties on the day converting 14 points between them.